McIntosh MC501 or Audio Research DS450M for Magnepan 1.7


Dear all - Which amp should I choose for Magnepan 1.7: McIntosh MC501 or Audio Research DS450M?

Planning to use the McIntosh D150 if I go with The MC501 or Audio Research LS27 if I go with DS450M.

Thank you in advance!
Livio
benagli1
Is the Audio Research DS450 a class D amp?  If it is, I would go with the McIntosh.  It has a lot of power and a lot of current.  I have the McIntosh MC152 and at 150wpc, it is much more powerful than the 250wpc Conrad-Johnson amp I used previously.
Thank you for sharing! Yes, the ARC DS450M is a class D amp and it has some mixed reviews but mainly positive.

 Read that it was paired with Magnepan at CES. Think this was the last D amp from ARC, probably due to slow sales.

But does not surprise me that you MC152 feels more powerful than a CJ with 250 class D since McIntosh underrates their true output in their specs.

I would appreciate Any other thoughts!
Have you considered the Sanders Magtech amp? It's very popular with Maggie owners.
Thanks for the feedback. Just checked out the Sanders Magtech amp and looks like it was designed for electrostatic speakers with high current demand. Very interesting indeed! There are none for sell in Audiogon. Looking for something used that I could sell without loosing too much if I don’t like 
Go with the McIntosh. Why? because its MUSICAL as hell and sounds gorgeous,powerful,dynamic,controlled and will drive those speakers without a whimper. Not to mention McIntosh amps are built like battleships, never break, they will protect your speakers from a clipped signal (that's a big one), and the company has been making them in up state New York for over 60 years. And they look gorgeous too!


Matt M
@benagli1  I owned the ARC DS450M and my advice is that they are not a very musical amp. They provide tons of power but that’s about it. Beside that the hum caused by faulty transformer was a complete nightmare. IMHO solid state amps are just not ARC’s strength. 

Cheers 
Thank you very much for the info. This is very helpful for my decision.

I was heading the MC501 direction but saw a pair of ARC DS450M at a good price. 

I will buy the McIntosh MC501.

Do you guys see a problem if I use an ARC LS27 preamp with a MacIntosh amp?

Thanks again!

I believe those ARC amps have been listed here 2 or 3 times now. If I remember the Stereophile review, they insinuated they were more on the detail oriented analytical side. I went from Classe to Odyssey to Conrad-Johnson, Rogue, Parasound and now to Mac. There is nothing like a Mac, they are extremely musical, forgiving of lesser equipment, high resale value and they are very dependable. And those big blue meters are gorgeous.

The ARC preamp will mate very well with the ARC, Heard it in a buddys system and at a show.

Bryston 7 Mono blocks
ask wendel at Magnepan this exact question 

Do you guys see a problem if I use an ARC LS27 with a Mcintosh amp?

I know of several who have used ARC with Mcintosh 501's.  The only question is the impedance match, Mac 501's are a low 10K and most tube preamp designers recommend 20K or higher, including ARC.

That's not to say it won't work, I have used CJ tubes with my 501's  and the sound has been excellent.  Just something to be aware of.....
There willl be no problem with regard to input as the ARC owners manual states:

OUTPUT IMPEDANCE:700 ohms Balanced, 350 ohms SE Main (2), 20K ohms minimum load and 2000pF maximum capacitance. Outputs (3): 2 Main, 1 Record (XLR and RCA connectors).

You can use the 10K input on the MAC (rca) or the 20K (XLR) the ARC will output well within range for great synergy...14X for the XLR input and 28X for the RCA. (10,000 amps input (se) divided by 350 (output of pre) is 28, as long as it’s 10 times or greater your good :-) The OP may want to consider RCA’s between the amps but XLR’s will work great as well.

ARC tube pre amp with a SS MAC amp is incredible sounding.

Matt M
Thank you so much fo your kind responses!
kinda like when IBM sold big blue mainframes..

” nobody ever gets fired for buying IBM “... ditto for the big blue meters...

i currently own   just 4 Mcintosh components, so take my comments  with a grain of salt....do you like the sound of those autoformers ?
you do have other choices in brick S house build quality - Bryston was named - so just be sure to check them out....

i agree the DSM-450 not the amp, i gave it 30 minutes driving Vandersteen 7 and it had been on for days.....lots of bang for buck....but.....